Penn State officials charged with perjury
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Penn State athletic director Tim Curley and another school administrator were charged with perjury and failure to report in an investigation into allegations that former football defensive coordinator Jerry Sandusky sexually abused eight young men, authorities said Saturday.
State prosecutors said Mr. Sandusky, 67, of State College, was arrested at 9:45 a.m. today. He was arraigned at 11 a.m. before Magisterial District Judge Leslie A. Dutchcot and released on $100,000 bond. He is scheduled for a preliminary hearing Wednesday.
Mr. Curley, 57, and Penn State vice president for finance and business Gary Schultz, 62, both of Boalsburg, were expected to turn themselves in Monday in Harrisburg, according to the attorney general's office. Mr. Schultz's position includes oversight of the university's police department.
At least one of the incidents was reported to head football coach Joe Paterno, who has testified that he told Mr. Curley about the incident the following day, according to prosecutors. Mr. Paterno has not been charged.
Mr. Sandusky, who worked with at-risk children through his Second Mile foundation, was charged with seven counts of involuntary deviate sexual intercourse; eight counts of corruption of minors, eight counts of endangering the welfare of a child, seven counts of indecent assault and other offenses. All of the assaulted children met Mr. Sandusky through Second Mile activities, according to prosecutors. Mr. Sandusky is originally from Washington, Pa.
After a graduate assistant saw Mr. Sandusky assaulting a young boy in a shower in the locker room of the Lasch Football Building in 2002 and reported the incident to Mr. Paterno, Mr. Curley and Mr. Schultz, Mr. Sandusky was banned from bringing children from Second Mile to the Penn State campus, according to Attorney General Linda Kelly.
The ban was "reviewed and approved by University President Graham Spanier without any further inquiry on his part," according to a statement by Ms. Kelly.
In spite of the ban, Mr. Sandusky did not lose any other post-retirement perks at the university, including an "emeritus" position; an office in the Lasch Football Building; unlimited access to all football facilities, including the locker room where the 2002 assault allegedly happened; access to all recreational facilities; a parking pass; a university Internet account and other privileges. Mr. Sandusky remained a regular presence on campus, according to Ms. Kelly.
Despite the powerful eyewitness statement about the sexual assault of a child, the incident was never reported to any law enforcement or child protective agency, as required by state law, prosecutors said.
"Additionally, there is no indication that anyone from the university ever attempted to learn the identity of the child who was sexually assaulted on their campus or made any follow-up to obtain more information from the person who witnessed the attack first-hand," Ms. Kelly said.
During grand jury testimony, Mr. Schultz acknowledged that he was a aware of a 1998 University Police investigation that also involved allegations of sexually inappropriate behavior involving Mr. Sandusky and young boys in the football showers, prosecutors said. He told prosecutors he did not pursue the matter further and did not seek additional review in light of the new report in 2002, they said.
Mr. Sandusky retired in 1999, after negotiating near-total access to university resources and facilities.
Ms. Kelly called Mr. Sandusky "a sexual predator who used his position within the university and community to repeatedly prey on young boys."
Years after Mr. Sandusky left Penn State, he used his position as a volunteer coach at a high school in Clinton County to contact a boy he had previously assaulted during the boy's overnight visits to Mr. Sandusky's home, according to Ms. Kelly. After the boy's mother reported the incident to the school district, the district barred Mr. Sandusky and reported him to the police, as required by state law.
The quick action by high school staff members in Clinton County stands in "marked contrast to the reaction of top officials at Penn State University, who had actually received a first-hand report of a sexual attack by Sandusky seven years earlier," according to a statement from the attorney general's office.
A message left on Mr. Curley's cell phone was not immediately returned, and a school athletic department spokesman had no immediate comment.
Mr. Spanier called the allegations against Sandusky "troubling" and said it is appropriate that the allegations be investigated thoroughly.
"Protecting children requires the utmost vigilance," he said in a statement.
Mr. Curley and Mr. Schultz, however, had his unconditional support and he predicted they will be exonerated, Mr. Spanier said.
"I have known and worked daily with Tim and Gary for more than 16 years," Mr. Spanier said in a statement. "I have complete confidence in how they have handled the allegations about a former University employee. Tim Curley and Gary Schultz operate at the highest levels of honesty, integrity and compassion. I am confident the record will show that these charges are groundless and that they conducted themselves professionally and appropriately."
Lawyers for Mr. Schultz and Mr. Curley agreed.
"Gary Schultz is innocent of all charges," said his lawyer, Tom Farrell. "We believe in the legal system, and we believe it will vindicate him. We will fight these charges in court, and Gary Schultz will be proven innocent of all of them."
Mr. Curley plans to fight the charges against him, too, said his lawyer, Caroline Roberto.
"Tim Curley is innocent of all charges against him," Ms. Roberto said in a statement. "We will vigorously challenge the charges in court, and we are confident he will be exonerated."
First Published November 5, 2011 11:03 am